Waxing lyrical

I’ve wanted to try encaustic art for ages and today I got that chance. Poilin McGowan, who is a talented artist, has recently opened the Open Door Gallery and Studio in Rathcormac alongside fellow artist Tanis Gordon Smith.

Poilin had a beginners encaustic art class so I jumped at the chance to have a go and I absolutely loved it. Encaustic art is wax art, you melt the wax and make pictures…I’m sure there is a more technical term for it but you know me.

What I loved about this was the element of surprise, because I’m a beginner I had no clue of what the finished result was going to look like. Poilin makes it look so easy and I really like her way of teaching, she’s very calm which makes everyone else calm.

After Poilin gave us a demo off we went to our work stations, we had our own areas complete with an encaustic iron, what looked like a soldering iron with various attachments and a heat gun.

I churned out a lot of pictures, I realised I didn’t put enough wax on the first few but I got better as the morning went on. There was something very relaxing about being in the shadow of Benbulben, looking at the rain hitting the pavement outside, and watching the wax morph into something interesting.

We were all so engrossed in the class that we didn’t even stop for a break. It’s easily one of the most enjoyable classes I’ve been too and of course now I really want an encaustic kit!

Poilin helped with this one – you can tell.

If you are interested in ‘fast’ art I’d really recommend this workshop, it’s brilliant.

shopping, sligo

Rathcormac Food and Craft Market


Rathcormac is the place to be every Saturday when the wonderful food and craft fair takes place. It’s on from 11am-4pm in Branley’s Yard, Rathcormac which is just between Sligo town and Drumcliffe. There is a wonderful atmosphere, brilliant stalls, friendly faces, live music, tasty food, the best of everything. It’s great to be able to support local businesses and find some really unique treasures.

Blue Pencil Arts

There are a wide variety of items for sale, too many for me to mention all the stall indivdually so I’ll just mention a few. To be honest I love them all though! The colourful plant pots are by Blue Pencil Arts.

Essential Me

Essential Me are at the market selling their wonderful products at affordable prices. Check out their website and you’ll see some photos from the product shoot I did with them.

Annies He-ART

Annies He-Art Studio are selling unique paintings. There are also other stalls selling paintings, woodwork, photos and anything you could think of.


June is there with all her lovely handmade crafts and signs.

Murson Farm

Murson Farm sell their fantastic breads, jams and cakes…I could eat them all 😉

Marshall Made It

Marshall Made It and Dreaming on a Star both have great stalls. They have brilliant gift ideas to suit every pocket.

Dreaming on a Star

There are lots more photos from the market here and Lucy did her own post about it here.


When you have finished looking around the market why not call into the Vintage Lane Cafe and treat yourself to a something tasty.


The cafe is warm and welcoming. The wood burning stove glows in the corner and the sun streams through the windows. I’m told Helen makes the most wonderful lemon cakes, they must be good because they were sold out when I was there. Oh well that’s a great excuse for me to visit tomorrow!


The craft village is also open. So with the market, the cafe and all the crafts Rathcormac makes for a great day out for all the family.